Earlier this week, I had an idea for a game mechanic, but I haven’t found a theme that really fits. The mechanic uses a deck of cards where groups of 4 cards are laid out, face up, on the table. 2 cards are vertical, and 2 horizontal. Players take turns swapping a card from their hand with one of the cards in one of the groups, trying to make sets, runs, etc (think poker hands, or maybe Yahtzee scores), and then scoring.
My original idea for a theme was flowers, but the swapping cards really doesn’t fit that. Can anyone suggest a theme that fits? I normally use a game’s theme to guide development, but for this design, I’m stumped.
Just to clarify – where are the sets/runs actually being collected and “made”? On the table in these groups of horizontal and vertical cards, or in the player’s hand? I see the swapping as a draw and discard, but are you trying to put the “right” cards down on the table or pick them up? Hopefully my question is making sense..!
Ok, thank you. So as of now your thought is that the person who actually completes the set gets the points, then those four cards from the table are discarded. If you wanted to keep your flower theme idea it makes me think of bees and other pollinators landing on a flower (the set of 4 cards) and taking/leaving pollen (swapping cards). When it’s all used up or pollinated (completed set) it’s not available for other bees anymore so it’s discarded. Maybe you would have multiple sets of 4 on the table at once. I do also agree that it could be perfect also as an abstract game without a theme. If you went with the city theme, I can picture the cards being parts of the buildings or roads being constructed. You would need to figure out why the sets are being removed thematically.. maybe you’re building blueprints or city planning and once you get a specific part completed it’s off your to-do list. Or maybe completed sets are worth varied points. Once a person completes one they immediately get to take the score for it. However that set could remain on the table and other players could continue changing it, in hopes to turn it into a set with a higher value. That would be like buildings being remodeled and upgraded. And roads being re-done. Lots of possibilities!
Players are making satellites (sets) that get launched into space (discarded) after being built. Press your luck by going for a BIG one! But be careful, if the game/round ends and you have an incomplete build, you get penalized!
Tinker….you are a tinkerer trying to repair items. Each item is a set of cards. You collect the set to repair the items. You can gain tools as you go to increase your ability to repair items. These can let you manipulate the deck and look for matching cards.